You don’t have to fight the battle to walk in victory

I ran across a saying the other day, it grabbed me and refuses to let go.

Now you take the “him” away and insert your own struggle or battle and this short sentence becomes so much more profound. How many times as Christians do we carry the weight of whatever we are fighting on our shoulders? That bill you are worrying over, the toxic relationships, the feelings of not belonging, that work situation, that betrayal, that health problem… Friend LET IT GO it’s toxic! We forget that God has already won over that struggle!

I will leave you with this song and I urge you to read the words to the song. Sing it over your life, your kids, this nation, and your friends. God is our Defender!

You go before I know

That You’ve even gone to win my war

You come back with the head of my enemy

You come back and You call it my victory

You go before I know

That You’ve even gone to win my war

Your love becomes my greatest defense

It leads me from the dry wilderness

And all I did was praise

And all I did was worship

And all I did was bow down

And all I did was stay still

And hallelujah, You have saved me

So much better Your way

And hallelujah, Great Defender

So much better this way

You know before I do

Where my heart can seek to find Your truth

Your mercy is the shade I’m living in

You restore my faith and hope again

When I thought I lost me

You knew where I left me

You reintroduced me to Your love

And You picked up all my pieces

Put me back together

You are the defender of my heart

And when I thought I lost me

You knew where I left me

You reintroduced me to Your love

And You picked up all my pieces

Put me back together

You are the defender of my heart

When I thought I lost me

You knew where I left me

You reintroduced me to Your love

You picked up all my pieces

Put me back together

You are the defender of my heart

Psalm 18:2

The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;

my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,

my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

Palm Sunday

“The next day the great crowd that had come for the festival heard that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem. They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting, “Hosanna! ” “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Blessed is the king of Israel!” Jesus found a young donkey and sat on it, as it is written: “Do not be afraid, Daughter Zion; see, your king is coming, seated on a donkey’s colt.””

‭‭John‬ ‭12:12-15‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Isn’t this sometimes how it is as Christians, everything is good so we are shouting Hosanna praising His name. We forget that Friday is coming the darkness WILL threaten our peace of mind. So much of the time that we forget and react just the way the Jewish people did and condemn the very one we hailed as our Savior just one week prior.

I am so grateful that this is not the end of the story. The Lord doesn’t promise us a life full of no trails, what He does promise is to never leave us or not give us His peace while the darkness tries to steal our joy.

Palm Sunday is a great reminder that Jesus WILL be back and EVERY knee will bow to the King Of Kings, there will be worship like the earth has ever seen! (Doesn’t that just make you want to shout?!?!) Until that day we are to worship even though we may feel like we are wondering in the darkness, we ARE NOT ALONE! You are are son or daughter to the King Of Kings the enemy has no power… NONE! Need me to say that again? You are are son or daughter to the King Of Kings the enemy has no power!

Song that I am singing today is “Great Are You Lord”. What a powerful song with powerful words. Need prayer? Drop me a line I would love to pray for you!

Great Are You Lord

And all the earth will shout Your praise

Our hearts will cry, these bones will sing

Great are You, Lord

It’s Your breath in our lungs

So we pour out our praise

We pour out our praise

It’s Your breath in our lungs

So we pour out our praise

To You only

The door is closing and you are sad

Life is a funny thing, one minute everything is great then you feel the winds shift. Surely this is not my life’s plan.How do you pick yourself back up when a door closes in your face on your favorite dream?Image result for inspirational memes

How true is this? Would we ever appreciate the light if there was no dark (no disappointments)

For me life has been confusing lately, do I stay, do I go, am I making the right decisions for my lil one… But I have a friend who is going through much worse and my heart hurts for that situation. My prayer is, that although you feel like the door is closing and the dark is settling in, DON’T GIVE UP! I know that it is sometimes hard to find your way back but do not give up because someone is waiting for you. (friend, family loved ones, etc) I will be here for you, always.

In the end, when you see the light you will know that everything was as it was supposed to be. So chin up, Baby Girl, be the storm! If you need help, I got you. lol  I have no trouble being the storm. You are strong, intelligent, talented, beautiful daughter to The King, and I am blessed to call YOU friend!

#betheStorm

Could you sacrifice it all for true love?

That’s kind of a heavy question for a romantic at heart, but lets explore this concept just a bit more. I recently re-watched all of the Star Wars movies, and I couldn’t help but think that most of the trouble was caused by people that thought people should just fall in line with little to no explanation. (Side note if you are training, mentoring someone and they ask you a question it is YOUR JOB to answer them. If not someone else just might and the results could be catastrophic.)

The first movies (1-3) tell the story of a boy who did not grow up in the ways of the Jedi’s but they were pretty sure he would be the one to restore balance to the force. He meets his true love but they were forbidden to marry. Anakin decides to risk it ALL of love, setting into motion events that no one sees coming. (Darth Vader is born, arguably one of the BEST villains ever) He looses everything: Padme, his children, and his grandchildren are even now affected by his decision. My question is what would you risk for true love?

In a day where people fall in and out of love like they change their clothes, giving your all seems like a thing of days past.

For the sake of argument, lets say you met THE ONE. I mean toe curling can’t breathe without them love. Then someone tells you, you can’t be with them, could you walk away and leave them and sacrifice your happiness? I wonder if Anakin knew what would happen, the devastation he would cause, if he would still make the same decision.

I will tell you I consider myself a pretty strong woman, but I do not see myself walking away for any reason other than my son…

 

Motivation: What keeps you going?

For the last two years I have been on a quest to get back to being more healthy. I am a single mom with a very active lil boy and need to be the best I can be for him and me! This is me right before I started this journey. 

I was about 55 lbs overweight, facing  back and wrist surgery. I ate nothing healthy. I knew the time had come to do things differently. So July 4, 2016 I put down Dr. Pepper for good… (I went from drinking 6-8 a day to none and started a healthier diet) I made it a point to NOT cheat the first six months. This is different for everyone, but I knew if I cheated I would not have the willpower to stop.  I was doing no workouts at this point either. December of 2016 I had lost 30 pounds but I still had 25 to go. It was time to get really serious. I hired a trainer.

This route is not for everyone, but I found having to answer to someone and send my measurements to him was a HUGE motivator. (I will find a pic to put here just for yall) January 2017, I had joined his six week program. I had forgotten just how much I LOVED the working out. I loved the feel of my muscles being sore. Six weeks flew by. At the end i had lost three inches and was well on my way to loosing the last of my weight.  I tried to make it on my own, I really did.  I ended up messaging him and asking about longer term programs. Having a trainer keeps me grounded, motivated and focused on what I should be doing.

Around April I met another  fitness junkie. I know what you are thinking, what happened to D? Nothing, I kept him, while I started incorporating MORE stuff from my new friend and the results were amazing! I found that he challenged me to do things that I normally would not have even attempted to do. I have NO quit in me when someone challenges me! (I may have fussed a lil though) In all my years I can say that I loved the way I felt and looked during this time the best. I could not have been more excited about my new muscle definition. (Pics of my baby shoulders) 

October- December 2017 was when I got a lil sideways (so if this happens to you don’t panic you can get it back!) I spent these months BUSY with family holidays and only occasionally did I hit my downstairs gym. I will say that getting back in the groove is the hardest part but now two weeks into January it feels like I haven’t left!

The question I get asked the most is, well what’s your goal? I don’t know if I have just one… I want to reach for the stars and never look back. Size matters not to me, I mainly try to focus on how I feel at the end of the day and can I keep up with my four year old! My goal is too motivate people the way my friends motivate me! My advice to you is NEVER give up. Start small and move from there. Need help? There’s no shame in that either. There are a lot of programs out there that you can do alone or online trainers that will help you, because I know better than most how intimidating “going to a gym” can be!

Past adventures that led to the time of my life

Music! I can NOT live my life without music. There is a song for literally everything no matter what you have going on in your life.  For as long as I can remember I have LOVED to sing. I doesn’t seem to matter what kind of music I am singing either.  (so much so that half the time I don’t even know I am doing it)

When I was 22, I saw an ad in the paper about coming to Nashville and auditioning for a record deal. Ha I mean why not? I was single no kids. SO off I go with my mom, curlers in my hair to sit in a room for 7 hours! Listening to people singing their hearts just waiting for my turn. I have never experienced anything like it. Intimidated. I mean  what did I have that they would want? Excited. The most people I had ever sang in front of was church lol. I sang. This is where I met Mrs. Mary Robbin (but we will talk about her later on) I just KNEW this would change my life forever, and in a way I guess it really did. I won a partial contract and that’s where our story will begin!

My poor momma went with me every other week  to Nashville. Voice lessons with Mary Robbin, she was a bundle of life and laughed at everything. She had an amazing life story but that is for another post.

It took three months of planning to actually get to the recording date. I was given 60 songs to go through to pick out my ten. I mean that should be plenty right? I came up with seven that I wanted, but couldn’t settle on the last three. That’s when Mrs. Mary Robbin brought me three songs her husband had written. I was absolutely in love with them! It took a week of recordings, to get all ten tracks. I will never forget Randy (the best sound man), I swear he never lost his patience with me and believe he could have. During the day, we had photo shoots, video shooting, auditions, and shopping. At night, I would sing till I had nothing left to give Randy. (ha there MAYBE still some of those videos floating around)

Next came getting to sing at the Stardust for a small showcase. I was a lil less scared about this one. Surrounded by my family and several of my friends, man I thought I was already famous. Standing backstage waiting to hear my name, the people cheering, the bright lights,  music starts deep breath, THAT feeling! I sang Sylvia “Nobody”. I was doing it living the dream. Or so I thought…

Working full time at the salon, still going to Nashville every other week and now its Christmas Eve. I was outside with my fellow friends when my past rolled up… lol Can I just take a minute and say everything happens for a reason and if you can’t make it work the first time, chances are that it probably won’t work the next time. It seemed innocent enough he just wanted to wish me Merry Christmas and congrats on the new career. One thing lead to another and we got back together.

Four months Mrs. Mary called to tell me there was a showcase I had been invited to where Mercury Records would be attending. I was beyond excited. Love. Career. Wasn’t my life progressing exactly as it was supposed to? A  week before the “big day” I drive to Mark’s house, where he met me and PROPOSED! SO I was getting married. I went to sing, got a call back for six months.  I could not wait to get back and tell him how it went (see the first red flag is he wasn’t there). He said he was so proud! That night we talked of the future: wedding, house, kids the whole nine yards.But this is where the narrative changed, If I wanted to continue this path that we of course would have to wait to get married (sec red flag) BUT he was quick to tell me supported me whatever I decided.

I made the decision to take a “break” to get married. Now that I am grown I am not sure what my decision would be when presented with the question. What I can say is now no matter how old I get I will always look back on these days with a fondness and say  WHAT A RIDE I HAD…

Contentment…

Are you content?

Someone asked me that the other day, and the answer is I have no idea. I am but I am not. I never stop trying to make myself be better or do better. I think sometime last year forgot how to be myself.

I don’t normally do “resolutions”, mostly because who actually sticks to those. However, I was inspired to jot some goals down. Not long term goal but short term goals, something to keep me focused in a time of chaos.

  • more time with Baby J (park days, outing, exploring, or crafts)
  • blog more
  • travel somewhere and explore something new at least once a month
  • start a travel blog
  • get back to working out (I have slacked since October and I miss it) and of course eating healthy again. This one has already begun
  • read 150-200 books this year (long term obviously… probably lol)
  • start a budget for said books
  • laugh a little more (more time with friends)
  • last but not least I would like to sing again even if it is a karaoke night

Whew you would have thought that short list would not have taken me two days to think about. So I will go back to my original question. Am I content? Yes I think I am BUT I will not keep from pushing myself to be better for me and my son.

Here’s where I think people get little lost. Contentment shouldn’t be confused for settling, no matter what that looks like for you (relationships, jobs, material things) Settling is NO good for anyone! So if you are settling don’t. If you are content, good for you! If you are a little lost like I was don’t panic, start a list of goals.

REMEMBER fortune favors the bold!

Cheating… Yes or No?

Definition of cheat

transitive verb
1to deprive of something valuable by the use of deceit or fraud 

  • cheated the elderly couple out of their property
2to influence or lead by deceit, trick, or artifice 

  • a young man who cheated young women into marrying him when he was already married
3to elude or thwart by or as if by outwitting 

  • cheat death

So what do you think? When is it cheating and when do you cross that line? Is it a specific time for you? Do you feel like there are times when it is justified? Angela, What if I feel like this person is MY forever? How do you help a friend that has been through it?

Well here are my thoughts and my answers to the questions above, let me know if you have different opinions than mine. (Believe it or not there’s more than one answer)

What do I think? Cheating is personal for me. Until you have been cheated on or been the “other person” I don’t think you can have an informed decision. I don’t feel it’s like ever an option.

When is it considered cheating? Hmmm If you are committed to someone, anything that you can’t do in front of your partner. I would consider “not good”. There is no such thing (in my book) as a innocent flirtation or texting with someone is taken when their partner doesn’t know or not involved.

Do you feel like their is times when it is justified? I think people mistake excuses for justification. But ,Angela, you don’t know MY situation… You’re right I do not , however I know you can leave any time you choose so cheating is not justified in my book NO MATTER WHAT.

What if I feel like this person is MY forever? Oh wow well, honey, I do NOT believe God will send you someone else’s husband or wife. Now that being said if you are unhappy and feel like there is no reconciliation then again I reiterate please leave before one or both of you get hurt. Ps. lets say you DO end up together how do you ever trust one another to be faithful to you? (just a thought)

How do you help a friend going through this trail? I know in my situation mostly I just wanted to not feel stupid or like I was worth something. See all I can see that comes from cheating on someone is that you leave them feelings of worthlessness, self esteem issues and feeling oh so gullible. Let them rant. Let them cry. And most importantly be encouraging, pray for BOTH parties (as no one is perfect).

My thoughts are this, if you do not want someone to treat you bad why would you treat them bad. Air on the side of caution, If you feel like you met someone you can not live without leave the one you are with now. Remember at one time, those people were the very air you breathed.

Does fortune truly favor the bold?

Does fortune favor the bold? Do you believe in fate? Do you want it bad enough? What’s the absolute worst that can happen?

So I have this ongoing debate with a friend… He says intimidation plays into whether or not someone asks you out. Here’s my thoughts on that.

Does fortune favor the bold? I believe it does. Sometimes the opposition is just as nervous as you are.

Do you believe in fate? Absolutely! If you are meant to be in someone’s life then you will be there.

Do you want it bad enough? Now here’s where it gets tough. It’s not easy putting yourself out of the limb where you can be exposed and vulnerable, but if you don’t then you won’t get what you want (and that’s a 100% guarantee). They can not read your mind.

What’s the worst that can happen? Hmmm REJECTION yeah i know that’s never fun. But what happens if you get that promotion or if that special person says yes? Is it worth the risk? If you say no it’s not then that job or that person is not meant for you. (IMO) If it is worth the risk then I challenge you to be bold! And remember this they are probably just as scared to say yes and you are to ask.

The older I get the more i realize that life is too short for someone to not know your worth.

#bethemouse #youcandoit #ibelieveinyou

Today my demons are screaming….

First, lets take a step back in the past, so you can better understand what is going on in my world today.

I was married in 2000 to a man that was not my knight in shining armor. We were NOT good for each other. Although he was never abusive, the effect was the same. November 2002 just two days before Thanksgiving my ex came into our house at 1:30 am and informed me he had filed for divorce.  My world was shattered… This man who had become the air I breathed was leaving me. He sat on the couch after that bomb, while we talked about things for a minute. We agreed to still celebrate the holidays at his grandparents house on Thanksgiving , mostly because I LOVED his family like they were my own. And then he left.

Present Day: November 2017

I still talk to his grandmother and cut her hair. She truly is an amazing woman. However, she is no longer able to drive. She asked me to come to her house to cut her hair so today I drove to the house that I have not been to since that November so long ago. Not much has changed but as I sat in my car trying to process why this house held so many demons for me, a thousand memories flooded my mind. Playing football in the front, gardening tips in the back, antiques in the basement, garage sales out front, pecan picking, and family time on the porch.

I learned today that the past is ok to visit but you can NOT live there. Emotions are a funny thing coming and going when they please. Its cliche’ to say everything happens for a reason but the statement is still the true. Sometimes toxic relationships/people are just that toxic! Cut those people out. Life is too short, for feelings of inadequacies. Choose your people carefully because even when you cut someone out they still leave a forever scar that can seep even years later. Even as my demons taunt me, I am thankful today that though she is not MY “mamaw” she always claimed me as her own!